Barefaced Beauty

Recently I’ve been thinking more about body image. This world is obsessed with beauty and yet its perception of beauty is not altogether natural. Most magazines seem to tell us that beauty means flawless skin, painted faces, hairless body, slim figure, and ultra-glossy hair. More recently, it seems that more and more people have pressured magazines to be more ‘honest’ by not airbrushing models/actresses. Yet even the ‘natural’ looks are not natural as it is clear that the models and actresses have make-up on. We continue to admire and envy these women as if they are real life barbies. We try to mimic their looks and turn ourselves into the picturesque flawless beauty everyone desires.

As part of the National Eating Disorders Awareness Week from 24 Feb – 2 March 2013, I will [try to] do a few more posts on body/self- image. I just found out about this as I was preparing a post for tomorrow (which will now be today’s), but it’s never too late to spread awareness!

The Renfrew Centre has launched its 2nd annual Barefaced & Beautiful, Without & Withincampaign during the NEDA week. I’m not quite sure if this is just for the USA but I think this is a good campaign for the entire world. Today, 25 Feb, is No Makeup Day.

“In this age of toddler beauty pageants, digital retouching, peer pressure, celebrity worship and other unrealistic cultural messages about beauty, there are definite challenges to developing a positive body image; challenges that put young girls at risk for eating disorders and other self destructive behaviors. Our hope is that through Barefaced & Beautiful, Without & Within, we will continue to promote the realization that real beauty and self-esteem truly begin from within.” – Adrienne Ressler

Having just found out, however, I realised that I’d already put on tinted moisturiser (which has only somewhat covered my blemishes and I still appear barefaced) and have drawn in my eyebrows (which I could wipe off). Most people on the other side of the country have probably already gone home and wiped off their makeup. That said, why not pick a day or go a week without make-up? Or, while you don’t have make-up on, snap a photo of yourself and share it on Facebook/Twitter/Instagram/etc. with the tag #barefacedbeauty! Don’t forget to check out other barefaced beauties and leave a positive comment under someone’s picture.

Here are some photos of our beauty icons / role models sans make-up:

For many of us, this will be a big challenge. Have we become too dependent on make-up? We refuse to be seen without make-up yet if we are seen in public, we apologise for looking disgusting that day and hope those who see us will not focus on our flaws. Worse, some of us even look more fatigued or are not in the best mood without make-up. I remember during my make-up phase in my uni years how I’d become so dependent on make-up that I’d rather wake up earlier and leave the dorm or house with make-up than be seen without. How ironic, considering I’d gone make-up free for 18 years prior to starting uni (except for prom and a few special occasions when I got to wear lipcolour). By 2010, I became less addicted to make-up that, ironically, I chose to do my practicum with no or little make-up simply because I did not have the time to deal with it every day. Plus, I started valuing my sleep more!

A few days ago, I wondered if there’d be a day when magazines, posters, runways, red carpets would feature models/actresses without make-up. When going literally au natural would be accepted, perhaps even popular. I’m not sure about the rest of the world, but in my country (or maybe my hometown), people are becoming more health-conscious and environmental. People are more willing to spend a bit more on natural products without chemicals. People are accepting alternatives, looking to their ancestors or other [historical] cultures for beauty/household secrets.

What do you think? For those of you who use make-up, are you willing to brave a day or a week without make-up? For those without, what has made you choose to go barefaced?